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How to Prevent Common Horse Breeding Disputes


In the past, horse breeding agreements were arranged by a handshake, with nothing in writing. As the horse breeding process has become much more complex, a well-written horse breeding contract is essential in preventing potential problems and disputes. Read on to learn about some common horse breeding disputes and how they can be avoided with a quality contract.

Problem #1: The Mare Doesn’t Deliver a Live Foal or the Foal Dies Shortly After Birth

In horse breeding contracts, it’s customary to include a Live Foal Guarantee. Stallion managers and mare owners could interpret the phrase differently, so it’s essential that it’s clearly defined within your contract. For instance, the Live Foal Guarantee may be defined as “a live foal that can stand and nurse unassisted” or “a foal that survives for 24 hours”. Additionally, your Live Foal Guarantee should explain the fees and obligations of a mare owner seeking re-breed privileges, as well as what actions would void the guarantee.

Problem #2: The Stallion Manager Cannot Meet the Mare Owner’s Semen Shipment Expectations

In agreements involving shipped cool semen, the mare owner may expect more frequent shipments than the stallion manager can deliver, resulting in a dispute. A well-written contract can prevent this dispute from arising, as it would clearly detail the specifics of the stallion’s availability during breeding season, as well as the stallion manager’s availability to receive and process requests for shipped semen.

Problem #3: The Stallion is Not in Good Health

If the stallion has a disease or hereditary condition, it can impact the mare and her offspring. A breeding contract can guarantee the stallion is in good health and not the carrier of a disease. The breeding contract should include the health examinations the stallion has been tested for and confirmed negative.  Similar tests and confirmations may be included for the mare if there are outside mares at the breeding farm.

These are some common problems that can be avoided with a well-written breeding contract. To ensure your contract is well-written and clearly states the rights and obligations of all parties involved, contact Catanese & Wells. Our experience lawyers specialize in equine legal solutions, including writing and reviewing horse breeding contracts. Contact us today for assistance with your contract: 818-707-0407.